The One Moto Show broke records this weekend in its new location.
Leaving its old home of 10 years at a warehouse in North Portland, One Moto packed motorcycle fans into Veterans Memorial Coliseum with its art-meets-motorcycles show Friday-Sunday, Feb. 7-9.
Thor Drake, founder of the One Motorcycle Show or One Moto and co-owner of See See Motor Coffee Co., a motorcyclist-friendly coffee shop on Northeast Sandy Boulevard, has hit on a winning combination of motorcycles, vendors, dirt racing, concerts and art shows.
Teddy Albertson, co-owner of See See and of the One Motorcycle Show, said they sold out Friday, Saturday and most of Sunday. Last year's attendance was 15,000, and he expected this year's to top 30,000.
Albertson stressed the "everyone is welcome" vibe as being attractive to big brands who want to diversity their customer base.
"The One Moto Show is for riders, nonriders, moto-curious and everyone in between — young and old. It's a celebration," he said.
"There's this subculture or community of individuals out there in this world yearning to engage with something like this," Albertson said. "Everyone's super friendly, we had kids next to mongrels next to hipsters next to grandads, with zero issues through the weekend."
Blending indoor races with a custom, classic and rare bike show with a trade fair, the show hosted national-level professional and amateur races on a flat dirt track, including the Super Hooligan Racing championship, which is racing an unmodified production motorcycle. Portland racer Andy DiBrino, age 25, won the Super Hooligan races. The show also hosted the first ever professional electric bike race, with competitors on Harley-Davidson, Alta and Zero brands.
He saw the visitors as more diverse than the usual bike bro show.
"It's extremely powerful in this age when people are so polarized," Albertson said. "Bike culture has been more alienating than inclusive. We pride ourselves on going after everyone on that outer rim, the curious, the interested, people wanting to engage with something that's unifying. Other (original equipment manufacturers such as Indian, Harley Husqvarna, Suzuki are clamoring for the demographics we have captured."
He added of his colleague, "Every big brand wants it but you can't create it. It's something Thor's mythical being has put together."
They took time to show the bikes as art, stressing there was no fluorescent lights in the hall.
"We got to program the entire exhibition hall. Two hundred amazing hand-built motorcycles under spotlights, our vendors went over the top in their build outs," Albertson said.
The show was sponsored by Indian Motorcycles, a classic marque beloved of old timers and young hipsters.
The show had 200 customized motorbikes by 150 builders representing all eras, including a Carey Hart custom bike and Drake's Indian Springfield Dark Horse bike with an electric Traeger grill on it. A Ural with a sidecar and an espresso machine is a common site at events around town, where food carts gather. That is another Drake creation.
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